PVD Growth of Solar Cells

A generalized numerical framework to simulate the fabrication of solar cells by physical vapor deposition was developed. Here, mechanisms of microstructural evolution such as evaporation, condensation, surface tension, surface tension anisotropy occur concurrently during the processing of a thin film and control properties and performance. The developed model combines the numerical efficiency and elegance of complementary but mutually exclusive numerical techniques to track the natural microstructural evolution that occurs during grain growth and coarsening, phase separation for multicomponent systems for both conserved and non-conserved formulations. We have successfully predicted the developed microstructure during growth and annealing, disorder phase transformations, including an analytical description of the nucleation and growth kinetics of  individual isolated islands and in interaction of multiple neighboring islands (to simulate  coarsening).